UPAF Member and Affiliate Holiday Performances

UPAF | December 7, 2021

UPAF Cornerstone Members

First Stage

A Charlie Brown Christmas

Nov. 20 – Dec. 26

Come home for the holidays with First Stage and this treasured holiday classic. Everyone is giddy with Christmas cheer, but Charlie Brown has the Yuletide blues. Will directing the Christmas play help him get in the spirit of the season? Join Charlie Brown, Snoopy and the rest of the Peanuts gang as they learn the true meaning of Christmas. This is one holiday gift the entire family will treasure.



Florentine Opera

Carols & Classics

Dec. 10, 11 & 14

Join us for a joyful and reflective celebration of the season through timeless Christmas music from around the world! Join us for some Holiday Cheer!



Milwaukee Ballet

The Nutcracker

Dec. 10-26

Shake off the winter chill and gather again with friends and family for Milwaukee’s Magical Holiday Tradition. Dancers from around the world create a winter wonderland in this timeless story, steeped in festive cheer. Join the tradition!



Milwaukee Rep

A Christmas Carol

Through Dec. 24

Make up for lost time with family and friends this holiday season as our full ensemble production joyfully returns to the historic Pabst Theater. A Christmas Carol is one of the best-known and loved stories in the English language. During the course of one memorable Christmas Eve the ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Future help Scrooge discover it is never too late to change his miserly ways. Enchanting music, dance, costumes, scenery and special effects will once again fill the theater to tell this timeless tale of love, hope and redemption. Featuring Lee E. Ernst as Ebenezer Scrooge, it’s the perfect way for audiences of all ages to celebrate the season!



Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra

Holiday Pops

Dec. 10-12

Bring the whole family to Milwaukee’s musical holiday tradition! The Milwaukee Symphony Chorus joins the Orchestra for a musical jubilee of your favorite carols, classics and sing-alongs. A cherished holiday experience returns for 2021, in brand-new Bradley Symphony Center style!



Handel’s Messiah

Dec. 16-19

Handel’s Messiah, one of the most revered oratorios of all time, has become a musical centerpiece for the holidays. Music Director Ken-David Masur conducts this dramatic masterpiece as we fill the Bradley Symphony Center with Handel’s sacred sounds, including Messiah’s rousing and immortal “Hallelujah” chorus.



Symphony Center Presents: Canadian Brass Holiday

Dec. 17

Canadian Brass, “one of the most popular brass ensembles in the world” (Washington Post), performs your favorite festive tunes in their entertaining and spontaneous style. Celebrate the holidays in this one-night-only event.

Symphony Center Presents programs do not include Milwaukee Symphony Musicians.



Skylight Music Theatre

Little Shop of Horrors

Through Jan. 2

Little Shop of Horrors is a worldwide phenomenon, devouring the hearts of theatregoers for over 30 years. In this disarmingly funny and quirky love story, our hapless hero journeys from obscurity to fame and fortune, unwittingly allowing an opportunistic plant to grow from innocent little flytrap to unstoppable carnivorous force. With a tuneful score by creative geniuses Ashman & Menken (Disney’s The Little Mermaid, Aladdin), the music blends pop, doo-wop, Broadway and Motown into uproarious and heartfelt songs.

Recommended for ages 10 and up. This is an updated age recommendation. If you have any concerns, please contact the Box Office.



UPAF Members

Bel Canto Chorus

Christmas in the Basilica

Dec. 10-12

Start your holiday season with Christmas in the Basilica, our most popular concert! It has become a holiday tradition for thousands of patrons around the Milwaukee area. We will feature Fredrik Sixten’s Magnificat along with traditional Christmas carols performed by chorus, organ, and brass to get you in the spirit of this joyous time of year. Also joining us this year are special guests, the Milwaukee Children's Choir. Get your tickets early as we expect to sell out again this year.



Black Arts MKE

Black Nativity

Dec. 9-12

Black Nativity by Langston Hughes returns Dec. 9-12, 2021 at the Marcus Center’s Wilson Theater at Vogel Hall. Hughes’ joyous holiday musical is a testament to his timeless work, telling the story of the Nativity through a combination of scripture, poetry, dance and song from the African-American perspective.

This year’s production features a fresh post-pandemic take on Hughes’ song play. Director Dimonte Henning is a proud local native and well-known director and actor.



Milwaukee Chamber Theatre

The Thanksgiving Play

Through Dec. 19

A team of terminally woke teaching artists’ good intentions collide with absurd assumptions in this blistering satire, now live on stage after a celebrated run in MCT’s 20/21 virtual season. Logan is a high school drama teacher who loves to push limits. But she runs the risk of getting carried over the edge with her next play: a celebration of the first Thanksgiving that also honors Native American Heritage Month. With the help of her yoga-teaching busker boyfriend, an elementary school history expert determined to make all his theatrical dreams come true and an “authentic” actor from Los Angeles representing all Native Americans, what could possibly go wrong?



Next Act

Red Herring

Through Dec. 19

Sex! Murder! Commies! It’s 1952: America’s gonna blow the H-bomb, the voters like Ike and everyone loves Lucy on Monday nights. Meanwhile, Joe McCarthy’s daughter just got engaged to a Russian spy and hard-boiled detective Maggie Pelletier has to figure out what Velveeta cheese and kippers can tell her about the stiff they just fished out of Boston Harbor. Hang onto your fedora: the cops are quick, the jokes are rapid-fire … and the spies are just plain hot, if you catch our drift.



UPAF Affiliate

Forte Theatre Company

Miracle on 34th Street

Dec. 17-24

Join us for this heartwarming holiday classic retold in the tradition of a live 1940s era radio broadcast. When a department store Santa claims he’s the real Kris Kringle, his case gets taken all the way to the Supreme Court. Watch the miracle unfold when the belief of a little girl makes all the difference in this iconic story. Staged with live Foley effects and a score of favorite holiday tunes, Miracle on 34th Street is sure to melt even the most cynical of hearts. A holiday experience for the whole family!



Frankly Music

From Bach to Paul Simon. Plus Something Brand New.

Dec. 11

English-American flute virtuoso and composer Emi Ferguson mixes it up with Frankly Music this December. Our Saturday evening program features intertwined selections from Paul Simon, Emi's own composition, various selections from J.S. Bach — plus the local premiere of Air in Motion by composer Pierre Jalbert. A string quartet of Frank Almond and crew, plus Emi as vocalist join in for some incredibly delightful and boundary-stretching music.



Marcus Center for the Performing Arts

LUMINARE Christmas

Dec. 17

Experience a Christmas Concert Event that will take you on a powerful visual and musical journey. Re-imaginings of Christmas Classics as well as brand new music will arouse your senses and emotions, leaving you feeling the joy and majesty of the most wonderful time of the year!

Experience the music that is destined to become a hallmark of the holidays and a tradition for the entire family!

Drawing from his many years as Keyboardist for Dennis DeYoung (STYX) and Lead Keyboardist for Mannheim Steamroller, John Blasucci and LUMINARE have created a new and exciting musical experience that will take audiences on an unforgettable journey through the holiday season and beyond.



Potted Potter

Dec. 21- Jan. 2

Playing to sold out houses all over the world, the Olivier Award nominated Potted Potter – The Unauthorized Harry Experience – A Parody by Dan and Jeff takes on the ultimate challenge of condensing all seven Harry Potter books (and a real-life game of Quidditch) into 70 hilarious minutes. Even if you don’t know the difference between a horcrux and a Hufflepuff, Potted Potter will make you roar with laughter.

Created by two-time Olivier Award-nominated actors Daniel Clarkson and Jefferson Turner, Potted Potter is perfect for ages six to Dumbledore (who is very old indeed).



Milwaukee Opera Theatre

Home Cooked Heroes: The Film

Through Dec. 31

The old statues have been pulled down. What new figures will take their place? This October, the indie companies of the Decameron Opera Coalition return to your favorite small screen with Heroes: seven world premiere opera short films presented in three episodes.




The Composer and Spirituality: A Musical Investigation

On Demand through Dec. 9

In this reprise of The Composer and Spirituality: A Musical Investigation, Dr. Jonathan Leshnoff, a world-renowned, GRAMMY-Nominated Orthodox Jewish composer, is joined by three musicians with local roots, including Jeanyi Kim, Associate Concertmaster (Third Chair) of the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra; Wendy Richman, celebrated violist and a founding member of the International Contemporary Ensemble; and Stefanie Jacob, acclaimed pianist and founding member of the Prometheus Trio.



Sharon Lynne Wilson Center

MSO Holiday Concert

Dec. 17

Ring in the most wonderful time of the year with a Wilson Center tradition, presented at a new evening performance time! Beloved by audiences of all ages, the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra Holiday Concert is a sparkling celebration of carols, classics, sing-alongs, and more. Founded in 1959, the MSO has taken its place among the nation’s finest orchestras, consistently nurturing music appreciation and talent among area youth, pursuing innovative ways to engage and delight audiences, and providing a solid base for Milwaukee’s vibrant music scene.



Sunset Playhouse

She Loves Me

Dec. 2- 19

If you loved the movie, You’ve Got Mail, starring Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks, you will love She Loves Me!

Amalia and Georg are co-workers who don’t see eye to eye. After each responds to a “lonely hearts advertisement” in the newspaper, they live for the love letters that arrive regularly from their unknown admirers. Join Amalia and Georg as they discover the identity of their true loves, with plenty of twists and turns along the way!

This intimate and touching show, received five 1964 Tony Award nominations. The 1993 Broadway revival won the Olivier Award for Best Musical Revival, the Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Revival of a Musical, and the 1994 Critics Circle Award for Best Musical.



Theatre Gigante

Thanks a Lot!

Streaming through Dec. 31

A monologue written and performed by Mark Anderson with music composed and performed live by Frank Pahl. Adapted and directed by Isabelle Kralj.

Gigante’s Artistic Co-Director, and monologist extraordinaire, Mark Anderson has done a lot of thinking this pandemic year and thus has a lot of stuff to say…



Stories from Holidays on Ice

Live streaming Dec 20 & Dec. 27

Holidays on Ice, written by David Sedaris, read by Michael Stebbins, live-streamed into the comfort and warmth of your own home.